Leading British artificial intelligence (AI) company DeepMind has renewed for a third year its support for under-represented students pursuing postgraduate studies at Queen Mary University of London.
The donation from DeepMind will be used to continue and expand the University’s DeepMind Scholarship programme, which launched in 2019 in the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science.
During the academic year 2021/2022, the DeepMind Scholarships will be awarded to women and Black students, with priority given to students living in the UK, who are currently under-represented in the field of Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence.
Five scholarships will go to students who wish to study on the University’s MSc in AI, MSc Computer Science, and MSc Machine Learning for Visual Data Analytics programmes and details can be found on the university's scholarships pages about how to apply for these opportunities. One scholarship will be for a student to undertake a PhD in Machine Learning or Artificial Intelligence.
Isobel Bates, Institute of Coding (IoC) Programme Manager at Queen Mary, said: "We’re delighted to receive another significant gift from DeepMind to continue our valued scholarship programme. Queen Mary, in partnership with the IoC and the Office for AI, is determined to do its part to break down the barriers that discourage women and Black students from digital education and careers. The DeepMind Scholarship programme is playing a key role in helping us address the under-representation of these students in the field by encouraging participation in the subject at postgraduate level."
Obum Ekeke, University Relations and Educational Partnerships at DeepMind, said: "At DeepMind we want to build advanced AI to expand our knowledge and find answers to some of the fundamental scientific questions facing society. It's an ambitious goal, and to achieve it we need a strong, diverse and inclusive AI community. The DeepMind scholarship programme is one way we seek to broaden participation in science and AI. By removing some of the financial barriers that prevent people applying to postgraduate study, and providing mentoring and pastoral support we hope to help build an AI community where everyone can participate and thrive - irrespective of their backgrounds.
“I’m delighted we’re able to support another cohort of DeepMind scholars at Queen Mary, particularly at such a critical time for the education sector.”
Our DeepMind scholars
Five female students have benefited from the DeepMind Scholarships in 2020/2021. Each scholarship provides students with full financial support, plus mentorship from DeepMind employees and opportunities for attending leading AI academic conferences and DeepMind events.
20/21 DeepMind scholar, Raghad Zuraiki, who came to the UK from Syria in 2013 and graduated from Queen Mary in 2020 with BSc Mathematics said: “I am very honoured to be one of the DeepMind scholars. I believe this opportunity is going to not only expand my knowledge and help me pursue a specialism in AI, but also help me to contribute positively towards the technological developments that will change the way we live and help disadvantaged countries through the use of AI.“
Student Gloriose Hitimana, who received a 19/20 DeepMind Scholarship to support her MSc in AI at Queen Mary, said: “I was working in order to save enough money to pay for my studies. Receiving the scholarship, eased up the stress on me and helped me focus better on my studies. In addition, DeepMind provided workshops and mentors to help me prepare for my career in the AI field.
“To all prospective students who feel underrepresented in the field of AI, please apply as your perspective, experience and your way of thinking is different and needed such that AI-based applications can truly benefit the many facades of society.”
Developing the next generation of AI experts
Queen Mary’s AI MSc programme is supported by IoC and forms part of the Industrial Master’s programme for Artificial Intelligence (IMAI) led by government’s Office for AI.
A world-first industry and government collaboration, the programme aims to boost the numbers of highly qualified AI experts and help give the UK’s tech industry the talent it needs to thrive in the future.
In September 2020, Queen Mary launched a new MSc Data Science and AI conversion programme for motivated students who have a good first degree in a subject other than Computer Science, who wish to develop knowledge and skills in the Data Science and AI industry.
Image caption:2020/21 DeepMind Scholars. l-r Gina Sajith. Oishi Deb, Ambra Jin, Mariya Pavlova, Raghad Zuraiki